Communication via the internet and information technologies has created the infrastructure for the most efficient data storage and transmission tools. However, with the availability of more data than a human could process in multiple lifetimes, some sources of information start to overlap, branch out, or slightly divert while still covering the same topics.
Filtering such information is a challenging feat, especially when the amount of data is only possible to work with technological assistance. Still, when the collection and processing of information are directed toward a valuable goal, entire industries begin to transform.
One of the biggest leaps in data, communication, and analysis came from the massive implementation of automated web scraping tools. With the ability to collect tons of information in a very short period of time and then transfer it to software with sorting and analysis algorithms, the precision of predictions, conclusions, and other business decisions has never been higher.
Of course, because everyone has access to public information on the web, the party that is best at web scraping and analysis has a greater chance to emerge as a dominant company in the modern market.
However, automated web scraping is an intense process, generating a lot more connection requests than the average human. This makes data scrapers easy to detect and block. As a workaround, modern companies and business-minded individuals use proxy servers – intermediary data carriers that change your IP address.
In this article, we will discuss proxy servers for web scraping and focus on specialized scraping proxies for web research and search engine optimization (SEO). We will also review different pricing options and the best providers for SEO scraping. Proxy pricing can differ depending on the additional features of the provided service and its quality-to-price ratio. But more about proxy prices later – let’s get into the intricacies of web scraping for SEO.
Main sources for SEO scraping
Because SEO is a heavily data-oriented field, there are many targets and sources of information that can aid you in optimizing your website. From search engines and competitor websites to turning the machine onto yourself, valuable data is in every direction if you know where to look.
Search engines and search engine results pages (SERP) can give you an overview and summarize your performance based on searches of the most important keywords. This process can be automated with web scrapers collecting SERP data much faster, getting it ready for analysis.
However, we must remember that search engines are not easy to scrape. Because Google and other search engine servers receive a lot of traffic, they are sensitive to an abundance of connection requests from one IP address. To avoid blacklisting, scrape search engines with proxy servers, prioritizing ones with a rotating option.
Web scraping lets you automate data collection from other businesses in the market to track their keywords, backlinks, and technical SEO solutions, such as the readability of the website. Understanding competitors helps businesses understand their strengths and weaknesses, plus uncover untapped opportunities.
On-site content analysis
Scraping your own website is a great way to filter good-performing pages and identify their strengths, and separate them from the poor ones. Such separation will help you better understand the differences between those pages and what can be improved to improve their rankings. With web scraping, you can evaluate the distribution and scarcity of keywords, helping you fill the gaps and improve your website.
Proxy servers: which ones to choose?
Proxy servers are an inseparable part of web scraping, but they have different types. Datacenter proxies provide fast and cheap servers with addresses organized in connected sets. They are not good enough for data extraction, especially for sensitive targets like search engines. That is because these IPs are not connected to an internet service provider (ISP), making them easier to identify and blacklist faster.
A better alternative and our go-to choice for data aggregation are residential proxies. Their services typically have a bigger IP pool and come from real devices supplied by ISPs. While connections are slower, these connections will look like regular human traffic to search engines and competitor websites.
Scraping proxies can be datacenter IPs, but most cases use residential proxies, as web scrapers do not need fast internet speeds. Their most common extra feature is rotation options: the ability to interchange addresses at predetermined time intervals. With enough IP changes, the suspicion towards one identity never reaches the point of blacklisting, letting you scrape multiple competitors or additional search engine instances at the same time.
In the end, we have a nice chain of dependencies that encapsulates the beautiful efficiency of data management. SEO solutions need information from web scrapers to make accurate decisions, and web scrapers need proxy servers to ensure consistent connections without interruptions. Because of that, I recommend investing in a business-oriented proxy service with specialized scraping proxies.